6 young women share resolutions for a safer New Year
Indian women are resolving to fight a battle for equality and justice in 2013.
Each time we wish someone a happy New Year, we can't help but think of Nirbhaya and Delhi and how 2013 should be a fresh chapter for India, one where such heinous crimes against women are a thing of the past.
While public rallies are demanding concrete improvements in women's safety, stringent law, governance, policing and justice, we also see women themselves preparing to stand up for their rights in 2013.
We spoke to a few young ladies about their New Year resolutions -- here is what they had to say.
Sampatti Kulkarni, school teacher
I will resolve to show no tolerance to any form of violence to women and won't take the blame for inviting the incorrect form of male attention. Advocate the human right to live freely whether gay or straight, and never hold a prejudice in your heart against any human being on the basis of sexual preference. And never fear society when it comes to raising my voice against the wrong done to women.
Pallavi Kharade, journalist
I have resolved not to put up with sexism, at work, on the streets or at home. I will not be quiet and will speak up against any kind of sexual assault for both myself and others. I represent a common woman and I will stand up for all my friends. I will not take the blame for any stupid actions by men and will wear what I want to.
Photographs: Mansi Thapliyal/Reuters
'To ensure that my boys don't grow up gender biased'
Anagha Patil, entrepreneur
My resolution will be:
- To constantly strive to talk to my boys about dignity and respect towards everybody, not just women.
- To coach them, as they understand a little more each year, to treat others and especially women the way they themselves want to be treated.
- To try and ensure that they are not gender biased. It's a lofty ideal, but every little step and every little gesture helps you make a better person! I believe it's vital to NOT be a bystander but an upstander in situations where they see any kind of bullying and (eve) teasing behaviour.
Prachi Garud-Kulkarni, professor
I'll speak up against all the emotional, sexual, and psychological harassment. I won't be quiet anymore. I'll reassure myself that I'm tough. I am a woman!
Photographs: Arko Datta/Reuters
'The Indian woman today is not the woman that most Indian men grew up with'
Chaitra Arjunpuri, freelance columnist
I think women who have power should consider themselves women first and politicians or leaders or employees later. They should use their power to raise their voices against violence against women. It's not just about violence outside, it's about the matter of a grassroot problem and it should begin with each and every family.
First and foremost, as mothers they should teach their sons to treat their sisters and other girls outside the family with respect.
Secondly, as wives, they should protest their husband's violence towards them. If a man beats his wife in front of his children, it will definitely have a bad impact on them. They take things for granted and one day they will also grow up, they will also become violent.
I resolve to do all this from this New Year.
Medha Krishnan, research intern
The Indian woman today is not the woman that most Indian men grew up with. Unlike their mothers, who pamper, cook and stay indoors, girls today may want to earn their own living, have a say in decisions concerning them,and decide not to depend on their husbands, boyfriends or relatives to chaperone them wherever they go.
I believe the way the youth behave in front of their parents and how they behave with their peers makes one realise how frivolously people change and hide their true selves as per their company. So for every girl to feel safe, mindsets will have to change, perspectives debated and society spruced, but the change will definitely have to begin at home, one step at a time.
It's high time we take that step.
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters